Making Meaning of American History, Geography, & Civics
Social Studies 7: Ancient American Civilizations to Pre-Civil War
Driven by core essential questions, students begin a two-year exploration of American and U.S. History with consideration of the peoples of the Americas prior to European exploration. Emphasis is placed on developing an understanding of the experiences of the myriad stakeholders in our nation’s history through critical examination of primary and secondary source documents. Students may consider the impact of geography on history, what it means to be an American, and the complexity of the causes and effects of defining historical events. Emphasis is placed on understanding the role of local people, places, and events in the greater stories of our nation’s early history. The civics curriculum focuses on understanding the structure and function of the U.S. Constitution along with other seminal historical documents.
Social Studies 8: The United States Civil War to the 20th Century
The second year of the U.S. history curriculum features an in-depth, multi-disciplinary simulation of the Civil War in which students explore the many dimensions of human conflict and war through historical documents, literature, data analysis, independent research, and experiential activities. Students develop the ability to make meaning of varied resources using skills of inquiry, literacy, and data analysis. The changing role and impact of the U.S. in the greater world arena is a focus of the year. The civics curriculum includes consideration of key constitutional law cases in our civil rights history as well as understanding current local, regional, national, and international political events.